Her friend moved to CA a few weeks ago. She packed the truck and flew out with her kids. Her friend's DH waited a little bit to tie up some loose ends, and then got ready to drive cross country with the animals. A dog, a cat, a rat, and a turtle, which her friend wanted to give her animal-loving daughter, but after some careful consideration, she said: NO THANK YOU.
The day arrived for her friend's DH to leave and there was no sign of the cat. He delayed his trip by a day, sleeping on the porch outside, hoping the outdoor/indoor cat would return. No such luck. He had to leave without her.
After a lot of help from the neighbors, signs, grapevine, etc., the cat was located. This is where she comes in.
Her friend asked her to take the cat to the airport so that she could fly home to CA. Sure, why not. She pictured taking the cat with it's carrier, driving up to some building in the cargo area, and dropping her off...something like a McDonald's Drive-thru.
Oh not so.
There is a place at JFK airport called Cargoland (well, she named it that). Just to find Building 67 took about 10 minutes, driving around the outskirts. Once there, she and the little ones and the cat entered a land where no one should have to go. A place with cargo, tar-like dirt on the floors, light bulbs hanging precariously from wires strung across walls; half of them don't work. No one is in a hurry. Nobody even greets the posse, as she enters Cargoland.
Because of the hour, and the anticipated long trek home, she dressed the little one only in pajamas and slippers. She regretted this after just 15 minutes of waiting...when it turned into an hour, life was not good. Yes, it took one hour to fill out 2 sheets of paper. Not because of her. She is still not sure why. She knows that at one point the Cargoland man told her that she should have had the ORIGINAL vet document saying the cat was healthy, not a fax. She was REALLY glad they let that slide, as she tried to prevent the tar-like dirt from permanently embedding in her daughter's slippers.
When everything was all set to go, and her children were crying and crawling up the walls, the Cargoland man detained her for 5 extra minutes so that he could write down a "great bar" that his friend owned, that was near her house. OH my my my.
On the way home, the clouds opened, the rain POURED down on her, followed by the marble-sized hail. It took 45 minutes to go one mile. Another hour later, she had gone a total of 2 miles. During the storm, she never once thought of the fate of the cat. The whole ordeal took about 5 hours. 12 miles there and back, and the drama at Cargoland.
The next morning, her friend called from CA: "Have you heard anything about my cat?" Why? because the cat never arrived.
Turns out the flight was cancelled. Duh. However, after a few hours of searching, someone from Cargoland called to inform her that the cat left at a way later flight, and was delayed flying into CA by 7 hours. Oh good, she thought, I do not need to return to Cargoland. MEOW.